Some people may find going to the gym daunting, especially when they haven’t visited for some time. If you haven’t gone to a gym, you may not know where to begin exercising. Worrying about workouts can put a damper on your weight loss plans or keep you from working out every day. Fortunately, you can try exercises that are not only accessible to beginners but are also effective.
In particular, these three workouts have enjoyed lasting popularity and for good reason. Let’s find out more below.
Among today’s workouts, yoga gets the distinction of being the most enduring of them all, having begun 5,000 years ago. More than just physical exercise, yoga is also a holistic workout that combines stretching and strengthening poses with mindfulness and meditation.
More than a hundred types of yoga exist, which vary in intensity. The most common type is the Hatha, which combines basic poses with mindful breathing. Lots of people do Hatha yoga in the gym. The other types include Vinyasa, where poses flow smoothly from one to the other, and Ashtanga, which incorporates a special breathing technique. Bikram is another type, which is also best known as hot yoga, since you do it in a heated room.
Whichever type you choose to practice, yoga is a low-impact full-body workout that engages your core, back, glutes, legs, and arms. Your flexibility and strength will increase with regular practice.
Like yoga, Pilates is a low-impact full-body exercise. It aims to increase your core strength, muscle balance, flexibility, and postural alignment while focusing on breath work. However, unlike yoga, Pilates focuses mainly on the physical aspect and the use of machines, depending on the type of class.
There are two types of Pilates classes: Mat and Reformer classes. In Mat Pilates, you use a mat to cushion your pressure points as you perform strengthening and lengthening exercises. It’s extremely versatile and can be modified for any age, body type, and fitness level. Reformer Pilates uses a bed-like frame with weighted spring combinations to provide resistance. With Reformer Pilates, you’re allowed a wider range of movements and exercises than your usual mat routines.
Pilates follows six core principles that also form its philosophical foundation: centering, concentration, control, flow, precision, and breathing. Quality is more important than quantity, and Pilates students prefer precision in movements than to repetition.
3. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
If you want to work out but don’t have much time, then High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) could be for you. As its name suggests, HIIT workouts involve bursts of high-intensity, hard-charging exercise, interspersed with recovery periods or low-intensity exercises. A HIIT workout can last anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes.
Because of its broad definition, HIIT covers a wide range of exercises. There’s the 4 by 4, which involves warming up, then doing four sets of intense exercises, in four-minute bursts. After each burst, you get three minutes to recover, and then you cool down. There’s also the 10-by-1 where you do 10 sets of intense exercise in one-minute bursts, with a recovery time of one minute between each burst.
With HIIT, you can raise your metabolic rate for hours after the workout so you can continually burn calories even after your workout. You also experience a reduction in heart rate and blood pressure, as well as improvement in oxygen consumption.